To the editor:
Regarding “Is Catholic chasm growing?” in the November issue, As a Catholic convert (2009), I offer my perspective. One particularly strong force in drawing me to the Catholic faith has been its authority, both historically as the Church founded by Jesus Christ with Peter as its head, and the continuous central teaching authority of the Church. Contrast (this against) the Protestant world of 20,000-plus denominations with a new one emerging for every nuance of doctrinal difference.
Yet I have the sense that Catholics are generally pretty fuzzy as to what the Church actually teaches about some important things. We have that wonderful Catechism of the Catholic Church, but it can be rather intimidating to delve into.
Yet how can we have reconciliation among Catholics without the clear statement of the truth of the faith? I can have sacramental reconciliation with God, only by confessing the truth of my transgressions which are in opposition to what the Church teaches.
Unfortunately the article by Mr. Latona seems to muddy the waters by lumping together as areas of contention what I understand to be matters of preference, such as whether to receive communion on the tongue or in the hand, with matters upon which the Church has strong teachings, such as contraception.
Perhaps Catholic Courier could do us the great service of running a regular Catechism feature to quote from and explain its teachings on various subjects. Isolating the matters of preference would allow us to focus on understanding the sometimes hard teachings of Christ and his Church. Admittedly that’s still a big order — we are all sinners. But upon what could we ever hope base unity, if not the truth of our faith? Wouldn’t this also be in keeping with the Holy Father’s “New Evangelization” (Catholic Courier, Nov., page A2)?
EDITOR’S NOTE: The article deliberately discussed matters of preference as well as articles of faith, as the former category seems to lead to more and more-intense conflict than does the latter.